The ability to see is the most important sense we have, and taking care of your eyes should be a priority. A yearly trip to the eye clinic for the whole family will ensure that everyone’s eyes are healthy and free of defects. Make eye care visits part of the same routine in health care as the family’s yearly health and dental exams.

Eye care is important for the whole family, and not to be reserved for adults only. Even infants should be examined by an eye doctor. This early exam can detect problems before they become serious. It only follows that children should be given eye exam’s on a yearly basis, the same as adults.

Never assume that your child will be given an eye exam when he or she starts Kindergarten. Make an appointment. The eye doctor will check your child’s eyes for numerous conditions that can often be corrected. Conditions like “lazy eye,” retinal problems, far or near-sightedness and others will be looked for. Studies have shown that nearly 60% of learning problems stem from eye problems.

As we age, we become more susceptible to diseases of the eye. Often, diseases such as diabetes, high blood pressure or high cholesterol can lead to eye problems. Diabetic retinopathy, retinal detachment or retinal tears can result from these illnesses. With age we are also prone to macular degeneration, glaucoma and cataracts, as well as “floaters,” those bothersome little flecks that seem to float across our field of vision sometimes.

The world of technology has opened the work force to additional eye problems that most people weren’t bothered with years ago. The computer age has led to people seeing the family doctor for back problems and carpal tunnel syndrome more often than usual. For the same reasons, we are now seeing our eye doctors for symptoms such as eye strain, sore eyes, red eyes, double vision and other problems resulting from our sitting in front of computer screens for hours at a time.

Having healthy eyes is just as important as having a healthy body. We only get one pair of eyes, and that is reason enough to keep our eyes free of disease, so don’t forget to make that appointment, for the whole family.

Matthew also writes on Eye Health and Diabetes: Diabetic Retinopathy, retinal tear and even floaters. He suggests having yearly eye check at www.eyecare.com.sg